Q: Power steering failed suddenly

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I've been hearing a slight whining sound for last couple of weeks. Not just while steering/turning, but all the time, increasing in intensity with acceleration. This morning when I started the car there was an extremely loud screeching sound that lasted about 10 seconds and then stopped. When it stopped I started driving but a couple blocks down the road I heard a thump and then the power steering failed. After that the battery light came on and so did a light saying "check charge system." Prior to this I have not been having any other symptoms such as a bad alternator, just that slight whining sound for a while. I don't know anything about stuff under the hood but from what I've been reading I suspect broken serpentine belt....?

My car has 124000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

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